It is very important that every Christian understands the nature of the renewed man and the forces coming against him.
The nature of man, in general, is threefold. Man is a spirit, because God is a Spirit, and we were created in His image (John 4:24; Genesis 1:26). Man possesses a soul, which is that part of the spirit that gives each man his individual personality. Man (spirit and soul) lives inside a physical body, which is his habitation while living in this physical world. The Bible says:
1 Thessalonians 5:23:
And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow [physical body], and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
When man was created in the garden of Eden, there was no sin in him until the day he disobeyed God. We need to understand the difference between sin, as an act of disobedience to God, and sin, the spiritual substance that affects human nature. It is the spiritual substance called sin that causes men to habitually disobey God by nature. In other words, sin, the spiritual substance causes habitual acts of sin.
Adam’s initial disobedience to God in the garden of Eden was not because he was compelled by the sin substance in him, because he initially had none, but was by choice, because he had a free will. After he had disobeyed, however, he was cut off from the eternal life of God, and the spiritual sin substance came into his spirit, soul and body. In other words, Adam became a sinner by nature. A sinner, therefore, is simply a man who has the spiritual sin substance in his spirit, soul and body and is compelled to live his life in habitual disobedience to God. This is the state of all men who are not born-again, because they inherited it from Adam.
The Born-Again Man
When the Lord Jesus rose from the dead, the price had been paid for the redemption of Man and the total removal of the spiritual sin substance, which contaminated man’s spirit, soul and body on the day of Adam’s disobedience. In other words, the price had been paid to restore man back to eternal life.
It is very important that Christians understand the true meaning of eternal life. It is translated from the Greek word Zoë, which refers to the spiritual substance inside God that makes Him God:
For as the Father hath life in himself, so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself. John 5:26
The Bible also refers to eternal life as living water:
John 4:10,13,14 :
Jesus answered, and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink, thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water…. Jesus answered, and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again; But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst, but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.
Most people have merely thought of eternal life as living forever, but, think about it, everyone is going to live forever: some in heaven, and others in the lake of fire. Eternal life has the implication, of course, that whoever has it will live forever with God in heaven, but it means much more. Just as the spiritual sin substance contains the nature of the devil (i.e. the force of death), eternal life contains the nature of God (i.e. the force of love and life), the power of God and the wisdom of God:
2 Peter 1:3-4
According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue; Whereby are given unto us exceedingly great and precious promises, that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
Eternal life is the power of godliness, which is the only thing that can liberate us from the spiritual sin nature, and all its effects in the soul and body:
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
When a man gets born-again, the spiritual sin substance inside the man’s spirit is instantaneously destroyed and expelled by the blood of Jesus, and is replaced by this eternal life, or living water, making him a completely new being:
2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
However, the sin substance still resides in the soul of the believer, which must undergo a gradual renewing process (sanctification):
And be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
The sin substance also still resides in the believer’s body, which God has also promised can be cleansed eventually:
And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken [give life to] your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.
God’s purpose for the end-time Christian while on earth, therefore, is the total cleansing of the spiritual sin substance, and eradication of its effects from the soul and the body. (For Christians who lived and died before the end-time, the total cleansing of the spiritual sin substance was not available, because God sovereignly reserved it for the end-time. However, the total domination of the spiritual sin substance has always been available to all Christians.)